Following decades of replanting efforts, India has restored its mangroves – wondrous trees that contribute to the preservation of marine species and coastal communities – helping to sequester tons of carbon from the atmosphere.
“What drives us, is the idea of regenerating our mangroves and restoring species diversity,” says Nandani Salaria of the Indian Forest Service who oversaw the restoration work. Through the mangrove restoration program, one of the largest in the world, some 93,000 hectares have been covered – a increase in coverage by 25% – from 1987 to 2019.
Mangroves are helpful to recycle nutrients, serve as nurseries for fish and marine creatures, and catch up to four times more carbon emissions than the rainforest. Some endangered species such as the Royal Bengal tiger, fishing cats, and salt-water crocodiles call the mangroves’ dense foliage home.